Tyler and Carla Johnson of Chestertown, Maryland
Ducks Unlimited is a family tradition for Benefactor Roll of Honor donors Tyler and Carla Johnson of Chestertown, Maryland. They credit their respective fathers and other close family members for encouraging their love of the outdoors.
"My father and uncle were hunters," Tyler says. "They taught us, by example, the importance of giving back to the resource. They were also active sponsors of Ducks Unlimited for more than 34 years. The conservation ethic they passed on to us can be seen throughout my family and on the lands we manage."
Carla also developed an early and abiding connection to the land. "Growing up on the family farm, there were two things we could do—go to church or play outdoors," Carla says. "My dad had been an Eagle Scout, and he taught me how to identify birds by their songs and how to hunt ducks and geese."
Together, Tyler and Carla run the Quaker Neck Gun Club and manage more than 2,500 acres of farmland near their hometown. "Managing wildlife habitat is a year-round job," Tyler says. "It's important to make sure my fields are ready by the time the ducks arrive, so they can grow strong and have the energy to continue their journey. There is nothing quite as satisfying as seeing over 40,000 ducks hanging out on a pond we flooded. We take from the resource, so we want to give back."
The entire Johnson family helps out at an annual DU banquet, which draws upwards of 200 people from the local community. Their son, Webb, serves on the local committee, and their daughter, Fletcher, also pitches in. "Like us, the kids have grown up supporting this incredible DU event," Carla says. It's a fun family affair we look forward to every year."